Resounding victory for top seed

3rd July, Macau: Top seed, Remy Ong of Singapore won his second internatinal title this year with a resounding victory in the Men's Open Masters stepladder finals of the 2nd Macau China International Open on Saturday. Remy Ong, who ended the second round finals with a 16-game total of 3507, was fortunate enough for not needing a second decider to edged challenger and No. 3 seed, Surasak Manuwong of Thailand, 233-223 in the title match.

Both the title contenders started off the match brilliantly with a double strike each but Remy Ong fell a third strike to put his opponent on his back foot after Surasak could only spare this third frame.

The Singaporean was on fire after he downed four more strikes consecutively from frame 5 leaving the Thai to trail by 26 pins going into the ninth and foundation frame.

Ong then opened in the ninth while Surasak struck in the ninth and tenth frames. Ong managed to strike in the tenth and then spared his bonus frame forcing Surasak needing to strike out for a chance for a second decider.   But the No. 3 seed miss the head pin to hit only six pins and allowing Ong to seal the match and the victory, 233-223.

"This was probably one of the closest match I've ever played and I'm extremely glad I prevailed," said the 31-year-old Ong, who picked up his second international title this year after winning the Saudi Open back in April.

Ong pocketed the top prize of MOP70,000 (approx. US$8,700) while Surasak settled for MOP30,000 (approx. US$3,700). Surasak had earlier ousted No. 2 seed, Zulmazran Zulkifli of Malaysia and compatriot, Yannaphon Larpapharat, 212-168-200 to make the finals.

Yannaphon edged fourth-seed, Adrian Ang of Malaysia and fifth-seed, Ryan Lalisang of Indonesia, 234-210-211 in a thrilling hard-fought and first stepladder match to advance to the second match. Meanwhile, another southpaw Sharon Koh took a resounding victory over her challenger and No. 2 seed, Putty Armein of Indonesia, 236-159 to win her first international title this year.

Koh started the title match with a double and then strung together four consecutive strikes from frame 4 as Putty had failed to spare her two opening frames. The top seed eased off for a convincing victory to win MOP40,000 (approx. US$5,000) top prize.

Putty had earlier easily defeated No. 3 seed, Lee Mi-Ryung of Korea and compatriot, Sharon Limansantoso, 206-156-199 in the second match to face Sharon Koh in the finals. Limansantoso took the first match by beating fourth-seed, Choi Hae Yun of Korea and sixth-seed, Wendy Chai of Malaysia, 191-175-174.   "The last time I won a title was back in 2008 and it seems a long time," said Sharon Koh after her victory. "I felt confident after the warming up and when Putty opened her first two frames, I was just pacing myself for a good game.

Detailed scores: Men's Open Stepladder Finals | Women's Open Stepladder Finals | Photo Album.